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Springfield Superintendent Proposes Suspension of Pay-to-Play Fees
SPRINGFIELD -- Springfield City Schools Superintendent Dr. David Estrop is expected to recommend on Thursday that the district suspend its pay-to-participate fees.
Estrop plans to propose the idea, which would start for the 2013-14 school year, at the Board of Education meeting.
The move comes at time when many schools are raising their pay-to-play fees or are considering increases to offset budget woes. Most recently, the Huber Heights board voted to back off a $750 fee and opted instead for a $428.
"I think it's totally ridiculous," said parent Lora Delawder. "It's just too much money for the kids to get in sports."
Most parents agree the cost to keep kids in sports is getting too high.
"And if it wasn't so expensive then the kids would have Stuff to do," said Delawder. "I be happy to have them drop it."
Well that may just happen in the Springfield City Schools District.
"That's what it's about can we create more opportunities and do so while maintaining good stewardship of taxpayer dollars," said Dr. Estrop. "We demonstrated to good stewardship so why not create more opportunities now."
In Springfield parents are paying $50 per child, per sport.
***CLICK HERE TO SEE HOW MUCH IT COST OTHER SCHOOLS IN THE MIAMI VALLEY***
This recommendation will cost the district $48,000 a year.
Dr. Estrop says they can afford it after saving millions in their utilities and building operations budgets. He says they are also getting ample support from local levies and state legislatures.
"10 years ago we were in state oversight essentially bankrupt as a school district and we have worked very hard since that time to get our financing in order and we have," said Dr. Estrop.
Check out Springfield City Schools Logo, it says every student, every opportunity, every day. Some feel the pay to play fees were getting in the way of this slogan.
"Our fees were some of the lowest in the Miami Valley but even having said that it stood in the way of some students being able to participate," said Dr. Estrop.
At least three of the five board members must approve the recommendation Thursday. Parents like Asaya Elliott hope they do.
"That would be wonderful," she said. "I'm a mother of five girls and the sports keep coming up so if they want to drop it I'm all for that."
If approved the measure would go into effect immediately and the parents who have already paid their pay to participate fee will get a full refund.
Estrop said he also will propose allowing other school districts in Ohio to contract for instructional services from the Springfield City School District. This would allow some students to participate in the many classes or programs offered in our district on a full or part time basis.
AUGUST 2: Huber Heights School Board Vote to Lower Pay to Play Fees
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